The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services agency opened the Fiscal Year 2016 H-1B visa petition window yesterday and it is expected that employers will file enough applications to reach the annual limit (65,000 regular cap; 20,000 Master’s Degree cap) – for the third year in a row – within just a few days of the filing window.

The CEO Council for Growth continues to urge Congress to move forward with highly-skilled immigration reform that will ensure our region, which is home to a vibrant knowledge-based economy that depends on top-level talent, has increased access to highly-educated workers. These workers are essential to driving innovation, economic growth, and job creation, all of which are key components for the region to remain competitive in the global economy.

The CEO Council calls on Congress to reform the nation’s high-skilled immigration system and, in particular, establish a market-based H-1B cap.

We urge Members of Congress to support the following reforms:

  • Establish a market-based H-1B cap and increase the employment-based green card cap;
  • Exempt STEM graduates from U.S. universities from the annual employment-based visa cap if they have an offer of employment from a U.S. business in a related field;
  • Streamline and improve visa and green card application process;
  • Eliminate the employment-based per-country visa cap;
  • Use new company-paid visa and green card fees to help fund STEM programs in U.S. schools to train the next generation American workforce; and
  • Provide visas and green cards to startup entrepreneurs and advance science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) degree holders from U.S. universities.

Collectively, these policies will stimulate entrepreneurship and help employers in the Greater Philadelphia area grow and remain competitive.  We urge you to reach out to your elected officials and tell them that this is an important issue. Click HERE to contact your official now.